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DTU will boost entrepreneurship research in new centre

Friday 21 Sep 18

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Anders Overgaard Bjarklev
President
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A new entrepreneurship centre will increase the entrepreneurship culture and strengthen the ecosystem for start-ups.   

DTU Entrepreneurship is a new centre at DTU, which is based on the University’s academic environments within entrepreneurship. The centre will increase research and education in the field and the purpose is to help engineers understand the interplay between technology and the new business models and support viable high-tech companies in adapting to a rapidly changing market.

The inspiration for the new centre comes from, among others, Chalmers University of Technology and US universities like Stanford, MIT, and UC Berkeley, where top researchers are working closely with the industry in open ecosystems that contribute to education and research.

The hope is that increased research and educational efforts within entrepreneurship will ensure even more staff-and student start-ups in the future. DTU already shows an impressive growth in its number of start-ups.    

According to an analysis conducted by IRIS Consulting Group on entrepreneurship at DTU through two decades—performance, results, and socio-economic effects, DTU has one of the largest and most well-developed ecosystems for entrepreneurship among technical universities in Europe. In the period 1999-2017, DTU fostered approximately 2,200 businesses.

Businesses must contribute to society
“Future researchers predict that half of Denmark’s jobs in 20 years will be found in new businesses, and we want to be the driving force and key player behind the creation of many of them. If we support our start-ups with the academic and professional knowledge, they are more likely to contribute to society in the future,” says DTU President Anders Bjarklev.

"High-tech jobs have a more positive effect socio-economically than all other types of jobs."
President Anders O. Bjarklev

“High-tech jobs have a more positive effect socio-economically than all other types of jobs. DTU therefore has a special position and a responsibility to help ensure Denmark’s future—and to be in charge of building bridges between technology and people through innovation.”

With DTU Entrepreneurship, DTU strengthens its innovation ecosystem which in recent years has grown considerably. The centre will have an important interdisciplinary role to promote entrepreneurship in close collaboration with departments, students, the DTU Skylab innovation hub, and DTU’s technology transfer unit.

The aim of the centre is to bring research and education within entrepreneurship together and create a basis for increased activities across departments and disciplines. Among other things—a special didactic model will be developed that supports the work, and also research on how to qualify the education in entrepreneurship and support start-up processes.

Americans create successful businesses
DTU Entrepreneurship will be headed by Innovation Professor, Jes Broeng, who comes from DTU Fotonik. He has, among other things, been guest researcher at UC Berkeley in California, where he followed the work of their entrepreneurship centre ‘Sutardja Center for Entrepreneurship & Technology’:

“Berkeley is working in an interplay between research, education, and entrepreneurship in a way that matches my own experience from DTU Fotonik. This is just far more extensive and fine-meshed in the United States.”

“The visit also gave me insight into how important it is to seize fields of research that are at the forefront of developments and combine them with other disciplines and external players at an early stage. The early dialogue between researchers, entrepreneurs, industrialists, and investors is therefore essential for successful technology transfer from the university and means that the Americans are cultivating relatively more start-up opportunities while strengthening their starting point for creating successful businesses. We will make use of this knowledge in the new centre.”

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